Siúlóid Lúibe Com Dubh
This is a fairly gentle walk along minor roads and lanes which starts and ends in Annascaul Village and brings you to the the birthplace of sculptor Jerome Connor and the grave of Antartic Explorer Tom Crean. It should take about an hour and a half, but allow more time if you wish to visit Annascaul Lake.
Walk: Siúlóid Lúibe Com Dubh
Start/Finish: Annascaul Bridge
Distance: c. 8.5km
Map: No. 70, Discovery Series
Walking Booklet: Page 22
Siúlóid Lúibe Com Dubh start point
Siúlóid Lúibe Com Dubh
A to B Start at Annascaul Bridge. You will see signs indicating “The Foot of the Hill Loop Walk” and “Sean Droichead Com Dubh Loop Walk”. Also notice the marker post with red arrow. There will be a number of these on the walk to indicate the correct route. Pass over the old bridge over the Annascaul River and along the Main Street of Annascaul Village. You will see the South Pole Inn, opened by Antarctic explorer Tom Crean. On the other side of the road, opposite the post office stands a statue of Crean in a small memorial park. The wide pavements of the village are the location of a lively horse fair twice a year. When you reach the end of the village take the first turn left.
B to C As you take this road you will be heading towards the glacial valley containing Annascaul Lake. The “coom” with its steep cliff walls is clearly visible.
C to D As you pass through a farm be sure to follow the direction post that lead you straight on. At the crossroads turn right, again following the red marker post.
D to E After crossing a bridge near some forestry plantations, you should be able to see a large ring fort in a field to your left. Eventually you will arrive at a junction with a triangle of grass. If you wish to make a short detour to Annascaul Lake, you should go straight ahead (it is well signposted). You will pass through a gate and reach a viewing area with car park.
E to F Follow the red marker posts and turn left. After passing a few houses you will see the monument marking the birthplace of sculptor Jerome Connor (1874-1943). Connor, who worked in the USA and Dublin, has a number of public sculptures on both sides of the Atlantic.
F to G Continue along this road until you reach a crossroads.Continue straight ahead, following the sign to Ballinacourty graveyard and Tom Crean’s grave.
G to H Continue past farms and houses and over a bridge. Ballinacourty Graveyard is on your left. It is an ancient graveyard, which once housed a parish church and is now closed for burials. In the furthest corner from the gate you will find the box tomb where Tom Crean was interred in 1938.
H to I and J On leaving the burial ground follow the red marker posts out of Ballinacourty village and onto the road back to Annascaul
J to K and A The road takes you past the farmyards of Annagap. Eventually you will see a square, stone-built tower on your right. This was the water tower for the locomotives of the Tralee and Dingle Railway. The railway crossed the road at this point and nearby was Annascaul station. From here the road back to the village is still known as “Station Road”, although the railway closed in 1953. As you pass the large industrial building on your left (the Connor Crean Centre, named after Annascaul’s two most famous sons) look back and you will see the stone railway viaduct over the Annascaul River. Station Road now brings you back to your starting point at Annascaul Bridge